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On This Day in History: The Mercury Thermometer Was Invented

On This Day in History: The Mercury Thermometer Was Invented

Let’s learn about the inventor of the mercury thermometer.

On this day in 1714, Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit (1686-1736) invented the mercury thermometer.  Fahrenheit was a physicist, inventor, and scientific instrument maker.  Interested in thermometry, he was dedicated to creating an instrument that could accurately measure temperature.  By 1714, improved understanding of mercury and better glass-working techniques allowed him to create the first mercury thermometer.

In addition to creating the first thermometer, Fahrenheit also developed a new temperature measurement system.  Using the boiling and freezing points of water, he designed the Fahrenheit scale that we continue to use today.

To celebrate this major scientific achievement, let’s all learn a little bit more about thermometers and temperature with these interesting facts.

1) The temperature of a substance is a result of the speed at which its molecules are moving.  The faster the molecules are moving, the higher the temperature of the substance.

2) Heat is a form of energy.  There are several physical effects of heat including: (1) Changing the temperature of a substance; (2) Changing the state of a substance (as from solid to liquid); (3) Causing expansion of the substance.

3) Absolute zero is a theoretical temperature.  It is the temperature at which all substances have no heat energy.  It is defined as zero Kelvin (0 Kelvin). 0 Kelvin is equivalent to -273.16 degrees Celsius, and -459.69 degrees Fahrenheit

4) The lower the pressure, the lower will be the temperature at which water boils.  At sea level, water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit.  At 12,087ft in Tibet, water boils at 188.6 degrees Fahrenheit.   At the top of Mt. Everest water boils at 159.8 degrees Fahrenheit.

5) To convert Fahrenheit temperatures to degrees Celsius you can use the following calculation: (1) Subtract 32 from the Fahrenheit temperature; (2) Multiply the result by 5; (3) Divide this result by 9.4.  The final result will give you the Fahrenheit temperature in Celsius.

We at The Maria Sanchez Show hope you learned something new about temperature to celebrate the anniversary of the mercury thermometer.  Don’t forget to check out our latest program, Shadow Politics with Senator Michael D. Brown.  Tune in on Sundays at 4:00 p.m. PST/7:00 p.m. EST.


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